Last modified on 29 October 2014, at 14:18


For other uses, see Mongoloid (disambiguation).

Mongoloid /ˈmɒŋ.ɡə.lɔɪd/[1][2] is the general physical type of some or all of the populations of East Asia, Central Asia, Southeast Asia, Siberia, the Arctic, the Americas, parts of the Pacific Islands, and small parts of South Asia. Individuals within these populations often share certain associated phenotypic traits, such as epicanthic folds and neoteny. In terms of population, it is the most widely distributed physical type, constituting over a third of the human species.

The word is formed by the base word "Mongol" and the suffix "-oid" which means "resembling", so therefore the term literally means "resembling Mongols". It was introduced by early ethnology primarily to describe various central and East Asian populations, one of the proposed three major races of humanity. Although some forensic anthropologists and other scientists continue to use the term in some contexts (such as criminal justice), the term mongoloid is now considered derogatory by most anthropologists due to its association with disputed typological models of racial classification.[3][4][5][6]

Populations includedEdit

Chinese Mandarin and Cantonese Mongoloid individuals (1902).

The first use of the term Mongolian race was by Christoph Meiners in a "binary racial scheme". His "two races" were labeled "Tartar-Caucasians", which comprised Celtic and Slavic groups, and "Mongolians".[7]

Johann Friedrich Blumenbach said that he borrowed the term Mongolian from Christoph Meiners to describe the race he designated "second, [which] includes that part of Asia beyond the Ganges and below the river Amoor [Amur], which looks toward the south, together with the islands and the greater part of these countries which is now called Australian".[8]

In 1861, Isidore Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire added the Australian as a secondary race (subrace) of the principal race of Mongolian.[9] In the nineteenth century Georges Cuvier used the term Mongolian again as a racial classification, but additionally included American Indians under the term.[10] Arthur de Gobineau defined the extent of the Mongolian race, "by the yellow the Altaic, Mongol, Finnish and Tartar branches".[11][12] Later, Thomas Huxley used the term Mongoloid and included American Indians as well as Arctic Native Americans.[13] Other terms were proposed, such as Mesochroi (middle color),[14] but Mongoloid was widely adopted.

In 1940, anthropologist Franz Boas included the American race as part of the Mongoloid race of which he mentioned the Aztecs of Mexico and the Maya of Yucatan.[15] Boas also said that, out of the races of the Old World, the American native had features most similar to the east Asiatic.[15]

display at the Horniman Museum

In 1981, Elizabeth Smithgall Watts who taught anthropology at Tulane University[16] said that the question of American Indians being a separate race from "Asiatic Mongoloids" is a question of how much genetic difference a population needs from another population to be considered a "major race". She said that even the people who consider American Indians to be a separate race acknowledge that they are genetically closest to "Asians".[17]

In 1983, Douglas J. Futuyma, professor of evolutionary processes at the University of Michigan, said that the inclusion of Native Americans and Pacific Islanders under the Mongoloid race was not recognized by many anthropologists who consider them distinct races.[18]

In 1984, Roger J. Lederer, Professor of Biological Sciences at California State University at Chico,[19] separately listed the Mongoloid race from Pacific islanders and American Indians when he enumerated the "geographical variants of the same species known as races...we recognize several races, Inuit, American Indians, Mongoloid... Polynesian".[20]

In 1995, Dr. Marta Mirazon Lahr of the Department of Biological Anthropology at Cambridge University said all Asian populations are grouped under the name "Mongoloid".[21]

Of Europeans, Finns were previously considered by some scholars to be partly Mongoloid, dating to claims by Johann Friedrich Blumenbach. This is no longer the case as Finns are considered typically European.[22] Finns show very little if any Mediterranean and African genes but, almost 10% of Finnish genes seem to be shared with Siberian populations. Nevertheless more than 80% of Finnish genes are from a single ancient Northeastern European population, while most Europeans are a mixture of 3 or more principal components.[23]


Meyers Konversations-Lexikon (1885–90).
Caucasoid race:

Negroid race:

Mongoloid race:
The Mongoloid race has the widest geographic distribution, including all of the Americas, Siberia, East Asia, and Southeast Asia, the entire inhabited Arctic while they form most of Central Asia and the Pacific Islands and significant parts of South Asia with exceptions on the other continents such as the countries of Turkey, Finland, Estonia, Hungary and Madagascar.

In 1900, Joseph Deniker said the "Mongol race admits two varieties or subraces: Tunguse or Northern Mongolian... and Southern Mongolian".[9]

In the 1944 edition of Rand McNally's World Atlas, the three subraces of the Mongolian race are depicted as being the Mongolian race proper, the Malayan race, and the American Indian race.[24]

Archaeologist Peter Bellwood claims that the vast majority of people in Southeast Asia, the region he calls the "clinal Mongoloid-Australoid zone", are Southern Mongoloids but have a high degree of Australoid admixture.[25]

Professor of anthropology, Akazawa Takeru (Japanese:赤沢威) at the International Research Center for Japanese Studies, Kyoto, said that there are Neo-Mongoloids and Paleo-Mongoloids. Akazawa said Neo-Mongoloids have "extreme Mongoloid, cold-adapted features" and they include the Chinese, Buryats, Eskimo and Chukchi. In contrast, Akazawa said Paleo-Mongoloids are less Mongoloid and less cold-adapted. He said Burmese, Filipinos, Polynesians, Jōmon and the indigenous peoples of the Americas were Paleo-Mongoloid.[26]

History of the conceptEdit

The earliest systematic use of the term was by Blumenbach in De generis humani varietate nativa (On the Natural Variety of Mankind, University of Göttingen, first published in 1775, re-issued with alteration of the title-page in 1776). Blumenbach included East and South East Asians, but not Native Americans or Malays, who were each assigned separate categories.

In 1865, biologist Thomas Huxley presented the views of polygenesists (Huxley was not one of them) as "some imagine their assumed species of mankind were created where we find them... the Mongolians from the Orangs".[27]

In 1972, physical anthropologist Carleton Coon said, "From a hyborean [sic] group there evolved, in northern Asia, the ancestral strain of the entire specialized Mongoloid family".[28] In 1962, Coon believed that the Mongoloid "subspecies" existed "during most of the Pleistocene, from 500,000 to 10,000 years ago".[29] According to Coon, the Mongoloid race had not completed its "invasions and expansions" into Southeast Asia, the Americas, and the Pacific Islands until "[t]oward the end of the Pleistocene".[29] By this time Coon hypothesis that the Mongoloid race had become "sapien".[29][verification needed]

Paleo-anthropologist Milford Wolpoff and Rachel Caspari characterize "his [Carleton Coon's] contention [as being] that the Mongoloid race crossed the 'sapiens threshold' first and thereby evolved the furthest".[30]

Mahinder Kumar Bhasin (Hindi: महेंद्र कुमार भसीन) of the Department of Anthropology at the University of Delhi suggested in a review of an article referencing Mourant 1983 that "The Caucasoids and the Mongoloid almost certainly became differentiated from one another somewhere in Asia" and that "Another differentiation, which probably took place in Asia, is that of the Australoids, perhaps from a common type before the separation of the Mongoloids".[31]

Douglas J. Futuyma, professor of evolutionary processes at the University of Michigan, said the Mongoloid race "diverged 41,000 years ago" from a Mongoloid and Caucasoid group which diverged from Negroids "110,000 years ago".[18]

In 1996, professor of anthropology, Akazawa Takeru (Japanese:赤沢威) of the International Research Center for Japanese Studies, Kyoto, said Mongoloids originated in Xinjiang during the "Ice Age".[26]

In 1999, Peter Brown of the Department of Anthropology and Paleoanthropology at the University of New England evaluated three sites with early East Asian modern human skeletal remains (Liujiang, Liuzhou, Guangxi, China; Shandingdong Man of (but not Peking Man) Zhoukoudian's Upper Cave; and Minatogawa in Okinawa) dated to between 10,175 to 33,200 years ago, and finds lack of support for the conventional designation of skeletons from this period as "Proto-Mongoloid". He stated that "The colonisation of the Americas by 11 kyr indicates an earlier date for the appearance of distinctively East Asian features, however, the earliest unequivocal evidence for anatomically East Asian people on the Asian mainland remains at 7000 years BP." He saw this as "possibility that migration across the Bering Strait went in two directions and the first morphological Mongoloids evolved in the Americas." [32]

The human fossil remains of the Ordos Man from Salawusu site in Inner Mongolia dated between 50,000 and 35,000 BCE show strong Mongoloid features, specifically on the fore-tooth and occipital bone.[33]

In 2006, Yali Xue (Chinese: 薛亞黎) et al. of the genome research Sanger Institute conducted a study of linkage disequilibrium that said that northern populations in East Asia started to expand in number between 34 and 22 thousand years ago, before the last glacial maximum at 21–18 KYA, while southern populations started to expand between 18 and 12 KYA, but then grew faster, and suggests that the northern populations expanded earlier because they could exploit the abundant megafauna of the "Mammoth Steppe", while the southern populations could increase in number only when a warmer and more stable climate led to more plentiful plant resources such as tubers.[34]


See also: Epicanthal fold
"Mongoloid" eye according to anthropologist Joseph Deniker
Arthur Posnansky, Director of the Tihuanacu Institute of Anthropology, Ethnology and Prehistory, Bolivia, in a writing entitled, Mongoloid Signs in Some Ethnic Types of the Andean Plateau, said that this indigenous boy had Mongolian folds that almost completely covered his eyelashes and the lacrimal parts of his eyes.[35]
Louis R. Sullivan, Curator of Physical Anthropology, American Museum of Natural History has identified these three men as "full-blood Samoan" men

In 2004, forensic anthropologist Caroline Wilkenson said Mongoloids are characterized by absent browridges.[36] R.G. Ong of the Department of Oral Radiology, Perth Dental Hospital, Australia said that Mongoloid subjects had about "20% higher bone density at the angle of the mandible" when compared to Caucasoid subjects.[37]

Louis R. Sullivan, Curator of Physical Anthropology, American Museum of Natural History, said Samoans are of the Mongoloid race but their features represent a "slightly different evolution since the time of their separation and isolation from their parental stock" or a retention of features that have been lost in other Mongoloid types. Sullivan said the wavy and wooly hair of the Samoan is one such retention compared to the stiff, coarse hair that typifies the Mongoloid. Sullivan lists most of the characteristics of the Samoan as having Mongoloid affinities such as: skin color, hair color, eye color, conjuctiva, amount of beard, hair on chest, nasal bridge, nostrils, lips, face width, biogonial width, cephalo-facial index, nasal height, ear height and chin.[38]

Dr. Rukang Wu (Chinese: 吴汝康) of the Institute of Vertebrate Palaeontology and Palaeoanthropology, Academia Sinica, Taiwan, said Mongoloid features are a mesocranic skull, fairly large and protruding cheekbones, nasal bones that are flat and broad, a nasal bridge that is slightly concave without depression in the nasion, "the lower borders of the piriform aperture are not sharp but guttered", shallow prenasal fossae, small anterior nasal spine, trace amounts of canine fossae and moderate alveolar prognathism.[39]

Dr. Marta Mirazon Lahr of the Department of Biological Anthropology at Cambridge University said the Paleoindian has proto-Mongoloid morphology such as pronounced development of supraorbital ridges low frontals, marked post-orbital constriction, prominent and protruding occipitals, small mastoids, long crania and a relatively narrow bizygomatic breadth.[21]

In 1882, Irish anthropologist Augustus Henry Keane who was professor at University College, London, said that the features of the Japanese that "attest their relationship with the great Mongolian family" are slightly oblique eyes, small nose, black lank hair, sparse beard, salient cheek-bones and yellowish complexion.[40]

Shunsuke Yuzuriha (Japanese:杠俊介) et al. of Shinshu University School of Medicine, Matsumoto, Japan, said the Mongoloid eyelid is characterized by puffiness of the upper eyelid, "superficial expansion of the levator aponeurosis" that are "turned up around this transverse ligament to become the orbital septum", "low position of the preaponeurotic fat" and narrowness of the palpebral fissure.[41]

Theodore G. Schurr of the Department of Anthropology at University of Pennsylvania said the Mongoloid racial type is distinguished by forward-projecting malar (cheek) bones, comparatively flat faces, large circular orbits, "moderate nasal aperture with a slightly pointed lower margin", larger, more gracile braincase, broader skull, broader face and flatter roof of the nose.[42]

Akazawa said Mongoloid skin has thick skin cuticle and an abundance of carotene (yellow pigment).[26] Rodney P.R. Dawber of the Oxford Hair Foundation and Clinical Lecturer in Dermatology said Mongoloid males have "little or no facial or body hair".[43] Mildred Trotter of the School of Medicine St. Louis Missouri said Mongoloid hair is coarse, straight, blue-black and weighs the most out of the races.[44] Mildred Trotter of the School of Medicine St. Louis Missouri and Oliver H. Duggins of the Department of Anatomy Washington University said the size of the average Mongoloid hair is 0.0051 square millimetres (7.9×10−6 sq in) based on samples from Chinese, North and South American Indians, Eskimos and Thais.[45] Daniel Hrdy of the Department of Anthropology at Harvard University said that Mongoloid hair whether it be Sioux, Ifugao or Japanese has the thickest diameter out of all human hair.[46] Professor of anthropology, Akazawa Takeru (Japanese:赤沢威) of the International Research Center for Japanese Studies, Kyoto, said Mongoloids evolved hairlessness to keep clean while wearing heavy garments for months without bathing during the Ice Age.[26]

In 1996, Rebecca Haydenblit of the Hominid Evolutionary Biology Research Group at Cambridge University did a study on the dentition of four pre-Columbian Mesoamerican populations and compared their data to other Mongoloid populations.[47] She said that Tlatilco, Cuicuilco, Monte Albán and Cholula populations followed an overall Sundadont dental pattern characteristic of Southeast Asia rather than a Sinodont dental pattern characteristic of Northeast Asia.[47]

Robert B. Pickering Professor of Anthropology at the University of Tulsa said the traits of the Mongoloid skull are: long and broad skulls of intermediate height, arched sagittal contour, very wide facial contour, high face height, rounded orbital opening, narrow nasal opening, wide, flat nasal bones, sharp lower nasal margin, straight facial profile, moderate and white palate shape, 90%+ shovel-shaped incisors and large, smooth general form.[48]

Miquel Hernández of the Department of Animal Biology at the University of Barcelona said East Asians (Kyushu, Atayal, Philippines, Chinese, Hokkaido and Anyang) and Amerinds (Yaujos, Santa Cruz and Arikara) have the typical Mongoloid cranial pattern, but other Mongoloids such as Pacific groups (Easter Island, Mokapu, Guam and Moriori people), arctic groups (Eskimos and Buriats), Fuegians (Selk’nam, Ya´mana, Kawe´skar) and the Ainu differ from this by having "larger cranial dimensions over many variables".[49]

Ashley Montagu who taught anthropology at Princeton University said that Mongoloids have 450 sweat glands per square inch while both "American blacks" and Caucasoids have 750 sweat glands per square inch.[50]


This is a Maidu, American Indian man from a publication by anthropologist Franz Boas in 1905.[51]
This is a Yurok, American Indian, woman from a publication by anthropologist Aleš Hrdlička in 1906.[52]

Anthropologist Elsie Clews Parsons said that physical features of the Proto-Mongoloid were characterized as, "a straight-haired type, medium in complexion, jaw protrusion, nose-breadth, and inclining probably to round-headedness".[53]

Margaret Sleeboom-Faulkner of the Department of Anthropology at the University of Sussex said that Kanzō Umehara said that the Ainu and Ryukyuans have "preserved their proto-Mongoloid traits".[54]

Mark J. Hudson Professor of Anthropology at Nishikyushu University, Kanzaki, Saga, Japan, said Japan was settled by a Proto-Mongoloid population in the Pleistocene who became the Jōmon and their features can be seen in the Ainu and Okinawan people. Hudson said that, later, during the Yayoi period, the Neo-Mongoloid type entered Japan. Hudson said that genetically Japanese people are primarily Neo-Mongoloid with Proto-Mongoloid admixture.[55]

Theodore G. Schurr of the Department of Anthropology at University of Pennsylvania said that Mongoloid traits emerged from Transbaikalia, central and eastern regions of Mongolia, and several regions of Northern China. Schurr said that studies of cranio-facial variation in Mongolia suggest that the region of modern-day Mongolians is the origin of the Mongoloid racial type".[42]

Dr. Rukang Wu (Chinese: 吴汝康) of the Institute of Vertebrate Palaeontology and Palaeoanthropology, Academia Sinica, China, said that the remains of Liukiang human fossils were an early type of evolving Mongoloid that indicated South China was the birthplace where the Mongoloid race originated.[39]

Dr. Marta Mirazon Lahr of the Department of Biological Anthropology at Cambridge University said there are two hypotheses on the origin of Mongoloids. Lahr said that one hypothesis is that Mongoloids originated in north Asia due to the regional continuity in this region and this population conforming best to the standard Mongoloid features. Lahr said that the other hypothesis is that Mongoloids originate from Southeast Asian populations that expanded from Africa to Southeast Asia during the first half of the Upper Pleistocene and then traveled to Australia-Melanesia and East Asia. Lahr said that the morphology of the Paleoindian is consistent with the proto-Mongoloid definition.[21]

Anthropologist Arnold Henry Savage Landor said that the Ainu have deep-set eyes and an eye shape typical of Europeans, with a large and prominent browridge, large ears, hairy and prone to baldness, slightly flattened hook nose with large and broad nostrils, prominent cheek bones, large mouth and thick lips and a long region from nose to mouth and small chin region.[56]


Main article: Neoteny
Japanese man with soft, neotenic features

"Mongoloid skulls are the most gracile in the human family. It is believed that the Mongoloid skull type is a very recent evolutionary development."[57] According to Ashley Montagu who taught anthropology at Princeton University, "The Mongoloid skull has proceeded further than in any other people", "The Mongoloid skull, whether Chinese or Japanese, has been rather more neotenized than the Caucasoid or European" and "The female skull, it will be noted, is more pedomorphic in all human populations than the male skull". In his list of "[n]eotenous structural traits in which Mongoloids... differ from Caucasoids", Montagu lists "Larger brain, larger braincase, broader skull, broader face, flat roof of the nose, inner eye fold, more protuberant eyes, lack of brow ridges, greater delicacy of bones, shallow mandibular fossa, small mastoid processes, stocky build, persistence of thymus gland into adult life, persistence of juvenile form of zygomatic muscle, persistence of juvenile form of superior lip muscle, later eruption of full dentition (except second and third molars), less hairy, fewer sweat glands, fewer hairs per square centimeter [and] long torso".[50]

According to Clive Bromhall who has a Ph.D. in zoology from Oxford University, "Mongoloid races are explained in terms of being the most extreme pedomorphic humans".[58]

Richard Grossinger, professor of anthropology at University of Maine at Portland, said that "The intuition that advanced human development was pedomorphic rather than recapitulationary and accelerated was disturbing to many Eurocentric nineteenth century anthropologists". "If juvenilization was the characteristic for advanced status, then it was clear that the Mongoloid races were more deeply fetalized in most respects and thus capable of the greatest development".[59]

Javanese women (1902)

Stephen Oppenheimer of the Institute of Cognitive & Evolutionary Anthropology at Oxford University said that "An interesting hypothesis put forward by paleontologist Stephen Jay Gould many years ago was that the package of the Mongoloid anatomical changes could be explained by the phenomenon of neoteny, whereby an infantile or childlike body form is preserved in adult life. Neoteny in hominids is still one of the simplest explanations of how we developed a disproportionately large brain so rapidly over the past few million years. The relatively large brain and the forward rotation of the skull on the spinal column, and body hair loss, both characteristic of humans, are found in foetal chimps. Gould suggested a mild intensification of neoteny in Mongoloids, in whom it has been given the name pedomorphy. Such a mechanism is likely to involve only a few controller genes and could therefore happen over a relatively short evolutionary period. It would also explain how the counterintuitive retrousse [turned up at the end] nose and relative loss of facial hair got into the package". "[D]ecrease unnecessary muscle bulk, less tooth mass, thinner bones and smaller physical size; ...this follows the selective adaptive model of Mongoloid evolution".[60]

Leonard Halford Dudley Buxton who taught physical anthropology at Oxford University[61] said that in the "Yellow man" the depression of the nose is below the nasion rather than at the place where the nasal bones meet the frontal bone like in the "European races". Buxton said that in the "Yellow man" the nasal bones form a wider angle rather than the narrower angle of the "European races". Buxton said that these features of the nose of the "Yellow man" make it "flatter" and "not unlike that found in European children". Buxton said that "Yellow men" have the "Mongolian fold", and Buxton said that this "fold occurs occasionally in European children, and sometimes even in adults". Buxton said that the presence of the "Mongolian fold" in "Yellow men" is possibly due to the shape of the nose of "Yellow men" that "in some cases resemble that of European children".[62]

Cold adaptionEdit

See also: Allen's rule
"Eskimo Group" by photographer William Dinwiddie (1894)
Eskimo women and one Eskimo man (1922)[63]

Professor of anthropology, Akazawa Takeru (Japanese:赤沢威) of the International Research Center for Japanese Studies in Kyoto Japan, said that Mongoloid features are an adaption to the cold of the Mammoth steppe.[26] He mentions the Lewis waves of warm blood cyclical vasodilation and vasoconstriction of the peripheral capillaries in Mongoloids as an adaption to the cold.[26] He lists the short limbs, short noses, flat faces, epicanthic fold and lower surface to mass ratio as further Mongoloid adaptions to cold.[26]

Takasaki Yuji (Japanese:高崎裕治) of Akita University, Japan,[64] in the Journal of Physiological Anthropology and Applied Human Science said that, "Mongoloid ancestors had evolved over time in cold environments" and the short limbs of the Mongoloid was due to Allen's ecological rule.[65]

Professor of anthropology at Trent University Ontario, Canada, Joseph K. So (Chinese: ) (1980) cited a study by J. T. Steegman (1965) that the so-called cold-adapted Mongoloid face has been shown in an experiment, using Japanese and European subjects, to not offer greater protection to frostbite.[66] In explaining Mongoloid cold-adaptiveness, So () cites the work of W. L. Hylander (1977) where Hylander said that in the Eskimo, for example, the reduction of the brow ridge and flatness of the face is due to internal structural configurations that are cold adapted in the sense that they produce a large vertical bite force necessary to chew frozen seal meat.[66]

Miquel Hernández of the Department of Animal Biology at the University of Barcelona said that the high and narrow nose of Eskimos and Neanderthals is an adaption to a cold and dry environment, since it contributes to warming and moisturizing the air and the "recovery of heat and moisture from expired air".[49]

A.T. Steegman of the Department of Anthropology at State University of New York investigated the assumption that Allen's rule caused the structural configuration of the Arctic Mongoloid face.[67] Steegman did an experiment that involved the survival of rats in the cold.[67] Steegman said that the rats with narrow nasal passages, broader faces, shorter tails and shorter legs survived the best in the cold.[67] Steegman paralleled his findings with the Arctic Mongoloids, particularly the Eskimo and Aleut, by claiming these Arctic Mongoloids have similar features in accordance with Allen's rule: a narrow nasal passage, relatively large heads, long to round heads, large jaws, relatively large bodies, and short limbs.[67]

Kenneth L. Beals of the Department of Anthropology at Oregon State University said that the indigenous people of the Americas have cephalic indexes that are an exception to Allen's rule, since the indigenous people of the hot climates of North and South America have cold-adapted, high cephalic indexes.[68] Beals said that these peoples have not yet evolved the appropriate cephalic index for their climate, being, comparatively, only recently descended from the cold-adapted Arctic Mongoloid.[68]

Physical features of "Asian" peopleEdit

See also: Asian people
The racial diversity of Asia's peoples, Nordisk familjebok (1904)

Willett Enos Rotzell professor of Botany and Zoology at the Hahnemann Medical College said the Asian race has skin color ranging from a yellowish tint to an olive shade, with black and coarse hair with a circular cross section, an absent or scanty beard, a brachycephalic skull, prominent cheek bones and a broad face. Rotzell said that the Asian race has its original home in Asia.[69]

This is a recreation of the Inferior Nasal Aperture Frequency Table made by Dennis C. Dirkmaat professor of paleoanthropology and archaeology at Mercyhurst University. The labels mean the following: "Inc Gut" means "incipient guttering", "PCA" means "principal component analysis", "Pa SI" means "partial sill" and "Str" means "straight".[70]
human hair texture map from an 1885 issue of Popular Science

Dennis C. Dirkmaat professor of paleoanthropology and archaeology at Mercyhurst University[71] said that Southeast Asian skulls can be distinguished from Asian and Native American skulls in that they are "smaller and less robust" with noses exhibiting a medium width without nasal overgrowth, and can "exhibit gracile features common to female skulls".[70]

A 2009 study of facial detection technology said that the technology incorrectly classified more "Mongoloids" or "Asian" male faces as females relative to its error rate for the "Caucasian... and Negroid races".[72] Dirkmaat also said that body measurements of the "average Asian male" may fall within the range of those of the "American white female".[70]

Dr. Ann H. Ross, Co-Director of the Forensic Sciences Institute at North Carolina State University,[73] in a presentation on the concept of "race" (written in scare quotes) from the perspective of forensic anthropology, said individuals of "Asian ancestry" have an "intermediate profile", meaning the part of the maxilla is "moderate" compared to individuals of "African ancestry" who have a "projecting maxilla", and compared to individuals who are "White/Hispanic" who generally have a "straight profile" or "lack of prognathism". She qualified her statement about Hispanics by adding that their lack of prognathism would not hold true for Hispanic populations with "African admixture".[74]

Qing He et al. of the Obesity Research Center at Columbia University did a study on "fat distribution" of 358 prepubertal children and the study said that Asians had less gynoid fat than African Americans and more relative trunk fat than Caucasians, but less relative extremity fat than Caucasians.[75]

Victor H.H. Goh (Chinese:吴) et al. of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, National University of Singapore, did a study that said that the World Health Organization's obesity cut off based on body mass index misclassified the true obese in an Asian population by labeling 3.76 times more men and 1.64 times more women as obese than would actually be obese.[76]

Douglas W. Deedrick, Unit Chief of the Trace Evidence Unit for the Federal Bureau of Investigation, said that hairs of "Mongoloid or Asian origin" are characterized as being straight and coarse with a circular cross section and a wider diameter than those of other "racial groups". He said that the cuticle is thicker than those of Negroid or Caucasian hairs while the medulla is "continuous and wide". He said that the pigment granules are smaller than the larger pigment granules of Negroid hair, and the pigment granules in the cortex are "generally larger" than those of Caucasian hair. Unlike the "evenly distributed" pigment granules of Caucasian hair, Asian hair frequently has clusters of pigment granules that form "patchy areas".[77]

Jeffrey Min Ahn (Korean:안민) professor at the College of Physicians & Surgeons of Columbia University, said that the "typical Asian nose" has "a broad low dorsum, decreased tip projection, thick, lobular skin, wide lobule, abundant subcutaneous fatty tissue, alar flaring, a retracted columella, and a small osteocartilaginous framework."[78]

Eun-Sang Dhong (Korean:동은상) of the Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Korea University Medical Center, Seoul, Korea, measured 52 alar cartilages of 26 Koreans and concluded that the alar cartilages" in Asians is not much smaller than whites.[79]

Kyung-Wook Chun (Korean:전경욱) et al. of the Department of Plastic Surgery, Korea University College of Medicine, Korea, said that in "Asian noses" the size of the alar lobule is mainly due to the size of the dilator naris anterior muscle, the dilator naris posterior muscle and the "thickness of the external skin" rather than due to vestibular skin.[80]

Sang-Ki Jeong (Korean:정상기) et al. of Chonnam University, Kwangju, Korea, using both Asian and Caucasian cadavers as well as four healthy young Korean men said that "Asian eyelids" whether "Asian single eyelids" or "Asian double eyelids" had more fat in them than in Caucasians.[81] Jeong et al. said that the cause of the "Asian single eyelid" was that "the orbital septum fuses to the levator aponeurosis at variable distances below the superior tarsal border; (2) preaponeurotic fat pad protusion and a thick subcutaneous fat layer prevent levator fibers from extending toward the skin near the superior tarsal border; and (3) the primary insertion of the levator aponeurosis into the orbicularis muscle and into the upper eyelid skin occurs closer to the eyelid margin in Asians."[81]

Dae-Hwan Park (Korean:박대환) et al. of the Catholic University of Daegu, Gyeongsan, South Korea, used 498 "Asians" to study Asian eyes wherein he determined that in Asians the greatest growth of the "vertical dimension of the palpebral fissure", intercanthal distance and "the horizontal dimension of the palpebral fissure" were between 10 to 13 years old, 14 to 16 years old and 17 to 19 years old respectively.[82]

Wee-Kiak Lim (Chinese:林伟杰) of the Singapore National Eye Centre said that the "Asian lower eyelid differs from its non-Asian counterpart" by having "no consistent fusion between the capsulopalpebral fascia and the orbital septum inferior to the inferior tarsal border" and "no extension of the capsulopalpebral fascia".[83]

The average size of random melanosomes of "Asian skin" for Chinese individuals of Fitzpatrick phototype IV through V was measured to be 1.36 ± 0.15 μm2 x 10−2 which was between the higher value of 1.44 ± 0.67 μm2 x 10−2 measured for "African/American skin" of Fitzpatrick phototype VI and the lower value of 0.94 ± 0.48 μm2 x 10−2 measured for "Caucasian skin" of Fitzpatrick phototype II. The ratio of clustered to distributed melanosomes was 37.4% clustered vs. 62.6% distributed in Asian skin, 84.5%. clustered vs. 15.5% distributed in Caucasian skin and 11.1% clustered vs. 88.9% distributed in African/American skin.[84]

George Richard Scott, physical anthropologist at the University of Nevada, said that some East Asians (in particular, Han Chinese and some Japanese), as well as Native Americans, have a distinctive dental pattern known as Sinodonty, where, among other features, the upper first two incisors are not aligned with the other teeth, but are rotated a few degrees inward and are shovel-shaped.[85]

Genetic researchEdit

Genetic Distances and Effective Divergence Times Between The Three Major Races of Man (3) by Masatoshi Nei (Japanese: 根井正利), Professor of Biology at Pennsylvania State University[86]
Comparison Proteins
(62 loci)
Blood groups
(23 loci)
(85 loci)
Effective divergence time (years)
Caucasoid/Mongoloid 0.011 0.043 0.019 41,000 ± 15,000
Caucasoid/Negroid 0.030 0.038 0.032 113,000 ± 34,000
Negroid/Mongoloid 0.031 0.096 0.047 116,000 ± 34,000
This genetic distance map made in 2002 is an estimate of 18 world human groups by a neighbour-joining method based on 23 kinds of genetic information. It was made by Saitou Naruya (Japanese:斎藤成也) professor at the (Japanese) National Institute for Genetics.[87] Saitou et al. said that the Pan-Mongoloid grouping includes the Australoid, Amerindian and Asian Mongoloid groups.[88]
This is a genetic distance map made by geneticist Luigi Luca Cavalli-Sforza of Stanford University that shows the "Mongoloid group" among others.[89]
This map is a reproduction of a map made by Naruya Saitou (Japanese: 斎藤成也) professor at the (Japanese) National Institute for Genetics. It shows the human migration path out of Africa.[87] Saitou et al. said that the Pan-Mongoloid grouping includes the Australoid, Amerindian and Asian Mongoloid groups.[88]

In 1994, geneticist Luigi Luca Cavalli-Sforza of Stanford University divided a principal coordinant map of 42 Asian populations into three groupings: Asian Caucasoids, Northeast and East Asian and Southeast Asian.[89] Along Southeast Asia, Cavalli-Sforza said that there is a separation between northern and southern Mongoloids.[89] To the West, Cavalli-Sforza said there is an approximate boundary between Caucasoids and Mongoloids from the Urals to the eastern part of India.[89] Along this boundary there has been hybridization, causing a Caucasoid-Mongoloid gradient.[89] More specifically, the ethnic groups Cavalli-Sforza said that were in the Northeast and East Asian cluster were the Koryak, Chukchi, Reindeer Chukchi, Nganasan Samoyed, Northern Tungus, Nentsy, N. Chinese, Tibetan, Bhutanese, Ainu, Mongol, Japanese and Korean.[89] Moving south, the ethnic groups Cavalli-Sforza said that were in the Southeast Asian cluster were the Indonesian, Malaysian, Taiwan aborigines, Muong people, Thai, Filipino, S. Chinese, Balinese and Gurkha.[89] Other studies also show that S. Chinese being an intermediate between the N. Chinese and Southeast Asian.[90][91] Moving off the coast, Cavalli-Sforza said that there are Australoid and Negrito peoples, but also that the Polynesians are a diluted Mongoloid type, the Negritos of the Andaman Islands and Semang Negritos have a high frequency of the Mongoloid inner epicanthic eyefold and that among Australoid Micronesians some individuals look more Mongoloid.[89] Moving to the Americas, Cavalli-Sforza said that the Eskimos and Aleuts derived from the Siberian Mongoloids and came after the American Indians who are both Mongoloid in general and uniform racially.[89]

In 2008, biochemist Boris Abramovich Malyarchuk (Russian: Борис Абрамович Малярчук) et al. of the Institute of Biological Problems of the North, Russian Academy of Sciences, Magadan, Russia, used a sample (n=279) of Czech individuals to determine the frequency of Mongoloid mtDNA lineages.[92] Malyarchuk said that Czech mtDNA lineages were typical of Slavic populations with 1.8% Mongoloid mtDNA lineage.[92] Malyarchuk added that Slavic populations almost always contain Mongoloid mtDNA lineage.[92] Malyarchuk said that the Mongoloid component of Slavic people was partially added before the split of Balto-Slavics in 2,000–3,000 BCE with additional Mongoloid mixture occurring among Slavics in the last 4,000 years.[92] Malyarchuk said that the Russian population was developed by the assimilation of the indigenous pre-Slavic population of Eastern Europe by true Slavs with additional assimilation of Finno-Ugric populations and long-lasting interactions with the populations of Siberia and Central Asia.[92] Malyarchuk said that other Slavs Mongoloid component was increased during the waves of migration from steppe populations (Huns, Avars, Bulgars and Mongols), especially the decay of the Avar Khaganate.[92]

In 1999, Vladimir Orekhov (Russian: Владимир Орехов) et al. of the Institute of General Genetics, Moscow, Russia, said that there is evidence for influence of Mongoloid populations on the ethnogenesis of Russians due to the presence of mytotypes 26, 33, and 47 of Mongoloid haplogroup C in the Russian population as well as evidence for Finno-Ugric populations in the ethnogenesis of Eastern Slavs due to the presence of Finno-Ugric mitotype (mitotype 31) in the Russian population, but he said that Russian mtDNA pools differed by Russian regions with Russians of the Eastern-European plain close to European ethnic groups.[93]

Atsushi Tajima (Japanese: 田嶋敦) et al. of Graduate University for Advanced Studies, Hayama, Kanagawa, Japan, said that there is evidence for four separate populations, carrying distinct sets of non-recombining Y chromosome lineages, within the traditional Mongoloid category: North Asians, Han Chinese, Southeast Asians, and Japanese.[94]

In 1997, Masatoshi Nei (Japanese: 根井正利), Professor of Biology at Pennsylvania State University, said that clusters of genetic distances conform to the customary three major races of man, namely, Negroids, Caucasoids and Mongoloids.[95] Moreover, Nei said that Mongoloid populations irrespective of north and south show small genetic distances from any populations in Oceania and Americas.[95] Nei said that the Northern Mongoloid included the Evens, Buryat, Hui, Mongolian, Tibetan, Japanese, Ainu, Northern Chinese and Korean.[95] In the Southern Mongoloid, Nei included the Dong, Zhuang, Southern Chinese, Taiwanese-aborigines, Thai, Indonesian and Filipino.[95] Based on genetic data, Nei said that the Amerindians descend from two populations: an original Northeast Asians migration which became the Paleo-Indian and a later migration which became both the Na-Dene and Eskimos.[95] Based on the genetic data, Nei said that Southeast Asian Mongoloids are closer to the Micronesian and Polynesian than to the Papuan and Australian.[95] In 1993, Nei said that the Mongoloids were contained within a larger genetic grouping called the Greater Asians or Greater Mongoloids[95] which also included Pacific Islanders and Australopapuans.[96] In the Australopapuan grouping, Nei included Dravidians, Andamanese, Australian, Papuan and Philippine Negritos.[96] Since Nei said that Australopapuans were most closely related to East Asians, Nei offered an explanation for their peculiar traits. Nei rejected the hypothesis that Australopapuans have traits of black Africans due to convergent-evolution, since he estimated it would have taken far longer for them to have re-evolved frizzled-hair.[96] Nei supported the other hypothesis put forward by Chris B. Stringer of the Paleontology Department of the Natural History Museum that there were two populations and that the original African population had absorbed most of its gene pool from the Mongoloid group.[96]

Satoshi Horai (Japanese: 宝来聡) of the Japanese National Institute of Genetics, said that phylogenetic analysis indicated that there are two distinct groups of Mongoloids – one which early on diverged from Negroids and another that diverged from Caucasoids later.[97] Horai said that Mongoloid distribution corresponds to North and South America, Oceania, Southeast Asia, east Asia, and Siberia.[97]

A study conducted by the HUGO Pan-Asian SNP Consortium in 2009 used principal components analysis, which makes no prior population assumptions, on genetic data sampled from a large number of points across Asia. They said that East Asian and South-East Asian populations clustered together, and suggested a common origin for these populations. At the same time they observed a broad discontinuity between this cluster and South Asia, commenting most of the Indian populations showed evidence of shared ancestry with European populations. The study said that genetic ancestry is strongly correlated with linguistic affiliations as well as geography.[98]

In 2010, Sung-Soo Hung et al. (Korean:윤승수) of the Department of Biology at Seoul National University said that Mongoloids were relatively homogenous in 9-bp deletion type of the mtDNA COM/ tRNALys intergenic region.[99]

Professor Lic. Edvin Santiago Trujillo said that antigen Dia is not present in blacks and Caucasians. Trujillo said that Dia is found in populations of Mongolic origin. Trujillo said that Dia is present in Chinese (2 — 5%), Polish (0.25 — 0.91%), Japanese (8 — 12%), Mexican Americans (8.2 — 14.7%) and American Indian tribes (7 — 54%). Trujillo said that when Dia is found in Caucasians, there is a presumption that they have a Mongoloid ancestor.[100]

"Estimates of the Number of Nucleotide Differences per Site Both Among (dxy)    and within (dx or dy)    Each of the Three Races, and Net Nucleotide Differences (d)    among the Races" made by Satoshi Horai (Japanese:宝来聡) of the Department of Human Genetics, National Institute of Genetics, Mishima, Shizouka, Japan.[97]
Caucasoid 0.0094 0.0012 0.0028
Mongoloid 0.0128 0.0137 0.0015
Negroid 0.0194 0.0203 0.0238
"Blood Group Loci Used for Genetic Analysis... Polymorphic Loci and Their Heterozygosity"[101]
Protein Locus Caucasoid Negroid Mongoloid
ABO 0.441 ± 0.018 0.450 ± 0.21 0.589 ± 0.001
Auberger 0.488 ± 0.005 0.460 ± 0.032 ...
Cartwright (Yt) 0.082 ± 0.007 0.014 ± 0.014 ...
Colton 0.104 ± 0.009 0.000 ...
Cs 0.269 ± 0.018 ... ...
Diego 0.000 0.006 ± 0.006 0.068 ± 0.020
Dombrock 0.480 ± 0.007 0.444 ± 0.018 ...
Duffy 0.488 ± 0.006 0.088 ± 0.015 0.268 ± 0.028
Kell 0.080 ± 0.014 0.010 ± 0.006 0.000
Kidd 0.497 ± 0.003 0.382 ± 0.017 0.508 ± 0.025
Lewis 0.363 ± 0.015 0.498 ± 0.003 0.491 ± 0.006
Lutheran 0.069 ± 0.013 0.084 ± 0.015 0.000
MN 0.500 ± 0.001 0.499 ± 0.002 0.500 ± 0.002
P 0.499 ± 0.002 0.368 ± 0.018 0.354 ± 0.027
Rh (Cc) 0.493 ± 0.005 0.221 ± 0.020 0.464 ± 0.007
Rh (Dd) 0.472 ± 0.009 0.378 ± 0.017 0.265 ± 0.013
Rh (Ee) 0.280 ± 0.019 0.193 ± 0.020 0.439 ± 0.009
S 0.402 ± 0.015 0.413 ± 0.015 0.183 ± 0.023
Sd 0.415 ± 0.016 ... ...
Secretor 0.500 ± 0.000 0.500 ± 0.002 0.496 ± 0.001
Vel 0.028 ± 0.002 0.000 0.000
Xg 0.442 ± 0.009 0.495 ± 0.006 0.459 ± 0.020

DNA studies of "Asian" populationsEdit

See also: Asian people
Human Genetic Map (2007) by
Peter A. Underhill, Department of Genetics, Stanford University and Toomas Kivisild of the Leverhulme Center of Human Evolutionary Studies, University of Cambridge[102]
  1. Europe
  2. East Asia
  3. Americas
  4. Australia and Oceania
  5. South Asia
  6. East Africa

Rebecca Oakley and Chris Tyler-Smith of the Department of Biochemistry at Oxford University said that 90% of the Y chromosomes of "Asian" (including "Orientals") and European men in their sample (38/42) descend from one of two males.[103] The Y chromosome type of Group 1 was only in Caucasian or part Caucasian men, and the Y chromosome type of Group 2 was in Caucasian and completely non-Caucasian men.[103] The Y chromosome type of Group 2 was characterized by a large alphoid block containing the additional sites for A&I, EcoO1091, and HindIII, linked to a small poxY1 BgZII fragment.[103]

Scott W. Ballinger et al. of the Department of Biochemistry at Emory University said "Asian mtDNA lineages" originated in Southern China with the "Southern Mongoloid".[104]

Hiroki Oota et al. (Japanese:太田博樹) of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Germany, said that "Asian populations" have high mtDNA variation with Vietnamese having the highest mtDNA diversity, but, overall, the genetic distance between "Asian populations" is small.[105]

Melissa L. Cann et al. of the Department of Biochemistry at the University of California, Berkeley, said that early Asians did not mix with "Asian Homo and that the features of "ancient Asian forms" indicate that "Asian erectus" was not ancestral to "Homo sapiens".[106] Since modern-day "Asians" do not show the amount of mtDNA divergence expected had they mixed with Homo erectus, Cann believes the expanding Homo sapiens from Africa replaced the Asian Homo erectus.[106]

Douglas C. Wallace of the Department of Biochemistry at Emory University said that the mtDNA of the indigenous peoples of the Americas is "clearly Asian in character", but the few founding females carried "rare Asian mtDNAs", causing a different frequency of mtDNA and a "dramatic founder effect".[107]

Shama Barnabas, B. Joshi and C.G. Suresh of the Division of Biochemical Sciences, National Chemical Laboratory, Pune, India, said that evidence for the original people of India who they refer to as the "proto-Asiatic element" spreading into Southeast Asia to become Southeast Asians is shown by the mtDNA affinities between Indians and East Asians and Southeast Asians in DdeI 10394 site along with the associated Asian-specific AluI 10397 site.[108]

Nucleotide Diversities of Five Asian Populations and Genetic Distances among The Five Populations by Shinji Harihara et al. (Japanese: 針原伸二) of the Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Tokyo[109]
Japanese Korean Ainu Aeta Vedda
Japanese 0.00086
± 0.00019
± 0.000127
± 0.000122
± 0.000157
± 0.000214
Korean 0.000000
± 0.000127
± 0.00017
± 0.000114
± 0.000151
± 0.000213
Ainu 0.000006
± 0.000122
± 0.000114
± 0.00015
± 0.000145
± 0.000210
Aeta 0.000029
± 0.000157
± 0.000151
± 0.000145
± 0.00022
± 0.000232
Vedda 0.000091
± 0.000214
± 0.000213
± 0.000210
± 0.000232
± 0.00031
Harihara et al. said that the Aeta's close genetic distance to "Mongoloid populations" (Japanese, Korean and Ainu) is consistent with previous studies.[109] Harihara et al. said that the Vedda's large genetic distance from the other four populations may be due to genetic isolation, however Harihara et al. said that the present-day mixture of Tamils and Sinhalese makes their true phylogeny unclear.[109] The numbers along the diagonal are nucleotide diversities and the other numbers are genetic distances. (Information has been mirrored about the diagonal to make the table sortable. The original table Harihara made did not have information written in the upper right side passed the diagonal.)
Genetic diversity within/between continental populations by Hiroki Oota et al. (Japanese:太田博樹) of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Germany[105]
Number of Populations Within Populations average mean pairwise differences Between population average Fst
Africa 15 7.99 ± 2.72 0.201
Europe 12 4.63 ± 0.94 0.066
Asia 12 7.12 ± 0.91 0.033
Eurasia 27 5.95 ± 1.51 0.086
mtDNA divergence within and between 5 human populations by Melissa L. Cann et al. of the Department of Biochemistry at the University of California, Berkeley[106]
% sequence divergence
Population 1 2 3 4 5
1. African 0.47 0.04 0.04 0.05 0.06
2. Asian 0.45 0.35 0.01 0.02 0.04
3. Australian 0.40 0.31 0.25 0.03 0.04
4. Caucasian 0.40 0.31 0.27 0.23 0.05
5. New Guinean 0.42 0.34 0.29 0.29 0.25
The divergence is calculated by a way developed by Masatoshi Nei. The values of the mean pairwise divergence between individuals within populations (δx)    appear on the diagonal. The values below the diagonal (δxy)    are the mean pairwise divergences between individuals belonging to two different populations, X and Y. The values above the diagonal (δ)    are interpopulation divergences that corrected for variation within those populations with the equation δ = δxy – 0.5(δx + δy).
Ancestors, lineages and extents of divergence in the geneaological tree for 134 types of human mtDNA by Melissa L. Cann et al. of the Department of Biochemistry at the University of California, Berkeley[106]
Number of descendant lineages or clusters specific to a region
Ancestor Total Africa Asia Australia Europe New Guinea % divergence age*
a 7 1 0 0 0 0 0.57 143–285
b 2 0 1 0 0 0 0.45 112–225
c 20 0 7 3 1 3 0.43 108–215
d 2 0 0 1 1 0 0.39 98–195
e 14 2 2 4 2 0 0.34 85–170
f 19 1 7 4 4 1 0.30 75–150
g 10 2 3 2 2 1 0.28 70–140
h 30 2 4 0 15 1 0.27 68–135
i 8 1 0 0 6 0 0.26 65–130
j 22 1 3 1 5 1 0.25 65–125
All 134 10 27 15 36 7 - -
*Assuming that the mtDNA divergence rate is 2–4% per million years


Dr. George W. Gill, professor of anthropology at the University of Wyoming and Dennis O'Neil professor of anthropology at Palomar College, said that "Mongoloid" concept originated with a now disputed typological method of racial classification.[110][111] All the -oid racial terms (e.g. Mongoloid, Caucasoid, Negroid, etc.) are now often controversial in both technical and non-technical contexts and may sometimes give offense no matter how they are used.[112]

According to Ward O. Conner who wrote a book about John Langdon Down, since people with Down syndrome may have epicanthic folds, Down syndrome was widely called "Mongol" or "Mongoloid Idiocy".[113] In slang usage the term came to be used as an insult. A shortened version of the term, mong or mongol, is also used in the United Kingdom.[114] Chong Yah Lim, professor of economics at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore said that he did not like the term "Mongoloid" because it has "come to mean demented physical and mental developments". Lim said that he thought the term "East Asian race" would be a more "appropriately neutral, modern term".[115]

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